Author(s): Keiron Pim
"REVELATORY." (DAILY TELEGRAPH). David Litvinoff (1928-75) was 'one of the great mythic characters of '60s London' - outrageous, possessed of a lightning wit and intellect, dangerous to know, always lurking in the shadows as the spotlight shone on his famous friends. Flitting between the worlds of music, art and crime, he exerted a hidden influence that helped create the Kray twins' legend and Lucian Freud's reputation as a man never to be crossed; connected the Rolling Stones with London's dark side; redirected Eric Clapton's musical career; and shaped the plot of the classic film Performance by revealing his knowledge of the city's underworld, a decision that put his life in danger. Litvinoff's determination to live without trace means that his life has always eluded biographers, until now. This extraordinary feat of research entailed 100 interviews over five years, with everyone from Eric Clapton and Marianne Faithfull to James Fox and 'Mad' Frankie Fraser: the result is by turns wickedly funny, appalling, revelatory and moving, and epic in its scope as it traces a rogue's progress at the interface of bohemia and criminality from the early Fifties to the Seventies. It is also an account of Keiron Pim's determined pursuit of Litvinoff's ghost, which took him from London to Wales and Australia in a quest to reveal one of British pop culture's last great untold stories.
A fascinating quest for one of London's legendary characters
Long-listed for Gordon Burn Prize 2016.
Keiron Pim is aged 38, married with three young daughters and lives in Norwich, where he was for a decade the literary editor of the Eastern Daily Press newspaper before leaving to concentrate on writing books. He is the author of The Bumper Book of Dinosaurs (Square Peg) and he edited and introduced Into the Light: the Medieval Hebrew Poetry of Meir of Norwich, the first translated edition of England's only major medieval Hebrew poet.